Tag Archives: peak oil

Doomsdays (2015)

12 Dec

It seems to be common knowledge these days that we are on the eve of an apocalypse. Global warming, international wars, and the probable pandemic outbreak of some killer disease will certainly spell the oncoming death of humanity. However no event could be at catastrophic as reaching “peak oil”, a theoretical moment in the future where Earth will depleted of all it’s oil resources.

If civilization is bound to die soon anyway, why not try and live it up? That’s the exact attitude which embodies the two protagonists of Doomsdays. Billed as a “pre-apocalyptic comedy” Eddie Mullins’ debut feature film examines the lives of two apathetic but cynical hipsters/freeloaders/ criminals/vagabonds/alcoholics who decide to spend their remaining time on earth by illegally partying at other’s expenses. And by “illegally partying” I mean breaking, entering and residing in stranger’s empty countryside homes. Most of Doomsdays features Bruho (Leo Fitzpatrick) and Dirty Fred (Justin Rice) devouring stolen food and booze to their hearts content while completely trashing every home they come across – all without giving a single fuck.

It’s the kind of shocking, ethically questionable setup that feels like it was taken straight from A Clockwork Orange, but Mullins’ characters are so determined to live by their strange moral code (one running gag features a character who not only refuses to drive, but he is committed to destroying every car he sees) that they do everything so nonchalantly together it becomes darkly funny.

Our colorful duo comes across a few interesting characters during their journeys, including an adventurous younger boy named Jaidon (Bryan Charles Johnson), an angry homeowner named Ronnie (Neal Huff) and a “tourist” named Reyna (Laura Campbell). Fitzpatrick and Rice both give compelling performances and show off their character traits flawlessly; Bruho is prone to having sporadic fits of anger, while Dirty Fred lives up to his name and has a tendency to seduce women with his French. Doomsdays is not only a great character piece, but it’s also the funniest thing I have seen all year. Mullins has a great comedic knowhow and the unpredictable WTF action that takes place through the clever framing of cinematographer Cal Robertson is absolutely hysterical.

Strangely, the tone becomes a bit too silent, cynical and sterilized at times so that it slightly undermines the brilliantly funny writing (think something like Michael Haneke directing a script from Noah Baumbach). There are a few moments when the breaking-and-entering schtick runs a bit thin, but for the most part, the film works like a charm and just becomes more engaging as it progresses along to its odd but satisfying climax.

Bottom line: With characters that feel alive and energetic, Doomsdays is a hilariously creative indie comedy that doubles as a weird examination of apocalyptic apathy. 

Dirty Fred likes to think out of the box.

Rating: 9/10 

Film recipe: Borgman (2014) + Buzzard (2015) + Clerks (1995)